On July 22, 20202 we were so grateful to present:

7 science-based rules for communicating in high stress environments

to the Senior Women Academic Administrators of Canada (SWAAC). Here is the presentation including some of the question and answer period. Thank you SWACC for the opportunity to have this discussion with you membership.

On May 14, 2020 we hosted a Special Edition of Crisis ‘n’ Coffee. We were thrilled to have been joined with world-leading health and pandemic experts, Dr. Vincent Covello, Dr. Randall Hyer, and Stephan Margolis.


We gathered for a “virtual coffee” and discussed many things: crisis, health, pandemic, COVID-19 and even textured wall paper.

On April 15, 2020, we hosted a webinar, Communicating during a health crisis. In this webinar, we explored the idea that high stress and high concern situations change the rules of communications, as should your communication strategies.

We discussed:

  • the basic science behind risk and health communications,
  • core and fundamental principles of risk communications,
  • basic risk communication tools and templates that you can be used in your messaging tomorrow.

March 2020, Centre for Crisis & Risk Communication Principal, Benjamin Morgan gave a presentation to the International Association of Business Communicators – Calgary on risk communications, related to COVID-19. In this video, Benjamin shares some of the science and research behind risk communications and some tools that may support your organizations’ communications.

On March 19 2020, The Centre for Crisis & Risk Communication held a webinar on Pandemic Risk Communication & Business Continuity Planning. The webinar was hosted by the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) and was supported by the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) – Edmonton. Emergency Management professional Greg Solecki joined us to provide some emergency management and business continuity insights.

Click on the button below to download a fictitious crisis communication plan: Generic Logo Co. Crisis Communication Plan. You may use this as an example or template to work from while creating your own crisis communication plan. The video to the left helps explain some it’s content and approach.

The Mayor of Calgary, Alberta Canada, Naheed Nenshi was instrumental in the approach and the tone of the crisis communications during the 2013 Calgary Floods. “If we know it, Calgarians need to know it.” We asked Mayor Nenshi to reflect on the crisis communications and importance of being authentic, especially during times of crisis.

Benjamin Morgan presents “lessons learned” from (at the time) Canada’s costliest natural disaster and largest peace-time evacuation events #YYCFlood 2013 at Royal Roads University.

Thank you to Royal Roads University for creating and sharing this video. Several months after (at the time) the costliest natural disaster and largest peacetime evacuation in Canadian history, Royal Roads University asked Benjamin Morgan to return to the university to share his experience and lessons learned from the #YYCFlood 2013.

Dr. Vincent Covello Resources

Communication Under Fire

Vincent T. Covello, PhD, Director, Center for Risk Communication of New York City, presented “Communication Under Fire: Focus On Public Health Situations,” from Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH, on April 4, 2003. The National Association of Local Boards of Health presented the 4th Annual Ned E. Baker Lecture in Public Health. This was also sponsored by the: Wood County Hospital Foundation, Cove Charitable Trust of Boston, Northwest Ohio Consortium for Public Health, Western Reserve Geriatric Education Center, & the College of Health & Human Services at Bowling Green State University. This video was distributed to local health departments.

To help prepare to respond to questions, should your organization be asked to respond to an event, Dr. Covello and his research team have determined the 77 most commonly asked questions – by journalists during crisis events. These questions can help you prepare for how you respond.

The workbook presented in the pdf file above was prepared by ASTHO with the support of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, The National Center of Environmental Health, the National Center of Infectious Diseases with guidance provided by ASHTO members and other public health officials who participated in the focus groups who helped determine the direction of the project.


Much of the material presented in this document has been sourced from workshops presented by Dr. Vincent T. Covello, Director of the Center for Risk Communication, New York, N.Y. Additional materials have been provided by the staff of the Center for Risk Communication. Dr. Covello has allowed the Centre for Risk Management to post this document on its website to promote the understanding of the science of risk communication and to the development of this workbook.


Centre for Crisis & Risk Communications:

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